What Could the Two European Regionals Look Like Next Year?

After earning two second- place finishes on Day 1, Kristin Holte sits atop the Meridian Regional Leaderboard. Photo courtesy of CrossFit Inc.
After earning two second- place finishes on Day 1, Kristin Holte sits atop the Meridian Regional Leaderboard. Photo courtesy of CrossFit Inc.

The biggest beneficiaries of the changes to the 2018 CrossFit Regional format were athletes from the European/Meridian regional. As the Europe and Africa regions expanded significantly over the past several years, just qualifying for the Meridian Regional was difficult.

Now, with the Meridian Regional getting split into two regionals, a North and a South, it means that nine men, women and teams will all qualify for the CrossFit Games. While the boundaries have not been defined, we do know that five spots will come from the North Regional and four will come from the South Regional.

Here are the athletes who qualified for the 2017 CrossFit Games out of the Meridian Regional.

Men

  • Bjorgvin Gudmundsson (Iceland)
  • Jonne Koski (UAE)
  • Jason Smith (South Africa)
  • Lukas Esslinger (Switzerland)
  • Frederik Aegidius (Iceland)

Women

  • Kristin Holte (Norway)
  • Sam Briggs (UK)
  • Annie Thorisdottir (Iceland)
  • Jamie Greene (UAE)
  • Thuri Helgadottir (Iceland)

To take a look at what the two regionals might have looked like in 2017, we took the Meridian Regional and assumed that the ranking would have been the same if it had been split into two regionals.

Since we don’t know the specifics of which countries will be in the North versus the South, here’s our best guess. In the North, we included Iceland, United Kingdom, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Russia. The South included the mainland countries in Europe (excluding Denmark), Middle East and Africa.

When looking at who might have qualified, the strength between the North and South differs between the men and women. For the men, three of this year’s Games athletes came from countries in which we believe will be classified in the Southern Regional. With athletes moving to Dubai to coach and train, this is one of the big factors in this strength.

For the women, however, the Northern Regional appears to be stronger. Four of the five came from a Nordic country while Jamie Greene was the only athlete who would have been from the South.

MEN
Combined Meridian  North Regional South Regional
1 Bjorgvin Gudmundsson Bjorgvin Gudmundsson Jonne Koski
2 Jonne Koski Frederik Aegidius Jason Smith
3 Jason Smith Lucas Hogberg (SWE) Lukas Esslinger
4 Lukas Esslinger Viktor Langsved (SWE) Elliot Simmonds (UAE)
5 Frederik Aegidius Alec Harwood (UK) n/a

 

WOMEN
Combined Meridian  North Regional South Regional
1 Kristin Holte Kristin Holte Jamie Greene
2 Sam Briggs Sam Briggs Anna Gragkou (GRE)
3 Annie Thorisdottir Annie Thorisdottir Laura Horvath (HUN)
4 Jamie Greene Thuri Helgadottir Carmen Bosmans (UAE)
5 Thuri Helgadottir Emma McQuaid (UK) n/a

 

Obviously, the top 4 or 5 athletes listed in the new regionals above are hypothetical, but it does give some early indications of the relative strength of what each regional could be. As we learn more information about the regional boundaries, we will make sure to keep everyone updated. Stay tuned!

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